15 March 2010

A quick narrative on things

"In performances devoid of outward drama that nevertheless convey deep emotion, Vega sings in a distinctive, clear vibrato-less voice that has been described as "a cool, dry sandpaper-brushed near-whisper" and as "plaintive but disarmingly powerful."

Suzanne Vega concert was everything I expected - even though who knows, there may be little difference between hearing an amplified voice or radio voice rather than the naked soundwave, I was able to reach a rare emotional state as the notes washed over me. Whoa, I'm not a die-hard fan, I've just liked her Solitude Standing and remember humming Luka while pedaling around the block as an 80s kid. And as the 80s were the renaissance of sorts of the modern era, I was obliged to go to reap some benefits of pedaling the creative mind.

As her last, she sang Tom's Diner a cappella, a nice surprise. Queen and the Soldier had the most reactions from the seats. I am reminded of an editorial (NPR?) that she is one of the last major artists in contemporary memory that seem to truly draw from deep introspection and show utter lyrical brilliance.
Now, I'm looking at a blue ticket stub, no. 4856138 from Saturday night. The Manny Pacquiao bout - I'm finally watching the showdown with a champion who has won titles in seven different weight classes and he increasingly commands the world's attention. The announcer reads his monumental "resume" in two very long minutes, the challenger's 20 seconds pale in comparison. Thoughts I tie together are the appreciation I have for the Philippines, the history of the campaign in the Pacific, the proud Americans of Philippine descent I've met in the service, a brief visit to the country.  Now I'm in a Filipino bar across the street (we have many in the area) and everyone's going nuts - it's not fancy, it was a small seafood marketeer two years ago, but the crowd is filled to capacity.  There are plenty of well-heeled fans, or those caught up in the event,  and no kidding, even a limo in my little neighborhood - WAY non-sequitur.  There is so much emotion wrapped into this welterweight fighter, I come to realize THIS IS living history and this fact unites we small-bar-filling spectators.  He threw a record number of jabs in the first round - some 120 or so.  Stuff is only adding to his legend.  Even though this Clottey fight was somewhat disappointing, the crowd packed in the little bar is electric, and even though boxing is brutal, it's a hell of a lot more elegant than the savage mixed martial-arts craze.

He prays before a bout, doesn't talk trash, cares about his country.  The most attractive thing about Manny is his humility. 
Anyway, right now I'm most appreciative of the opportunity to "think in neutral": daffodils have sprung in the backyard, my weeping willow is amazingly growing from only a clipping on my windowsill, I'm a year older and I'm finally shaking off some of the cold from fall and winter...  in this transition I'm also spending a bit more time brushing up on literary evaluation as the need to make meaning returns to view -  Not in a journal, but in living.  It's good to know that the more we read, the more our mental discipline grows.  Like gaining momentum in writing papers as the night goes on,  I'm also finding focused introspection is getting easier and less nerve-wracking.

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